Three cheers for Rep. Steve Stockman who has placed the roadeo clown controversys in the proper context; a free speech issue.
Texas Rep. Steve Stockman has invited the rodeo clown who impersonated President Obama at the Missouri State Fair this past weekend to perform at a rodeo in his home district.
The Republican congressman issued a statement Wednesday explaining why he wanted the rodeo clown to participate at a rodeo in Texas' 36th District.
"Liberals want to bronco bust dissent. But Texans value speech, even if its speech they don't agree with," Stockman said in the press release. "From Molly Ivins to Louie Gohmert and every opinion between Texans value free and open political speech. I'm sure any rodeo in Texas would be proud to have performers."
"Disagreeing with speech is one thing. Banning it and ordering citizens into reeducation classes for mocking a liberal leader is another," he continued in the release. "Liberals have targeted this man for personal destruction to create a climate of fear."
Missouri State Fair organizers apologized after video emerged showing the rodeo clown donning an Obama mask at an event. Crowds were heard in the clip cheering as the announcer asked if they wanted to see him trampled by a bull. Organizers later banned the rodeo clown from ever participating in the Missouri State Fair again.
Stockman called the performance in Missouri "a harmless gag."
"The idea to create a state of fear and make people afraid to trivialize Obama. No one tried to personally destroy the rodeo clown who wore a George H.W. Bush mask," he said.
Officials from the Houston Livestock and Rodeo say the Texas Republican never contacted them about inviting the rodeo clown. The vice president of the organization told Politico that Stockman "has no authority to invite any person to perform at our show."
And Rush Limbaugh also correctly identified the free speech angle with a brilliant example: (No, I haven't changed my mind about Limbaugh)
This burns me. This is outrageous. This is no different than what happened in all those countries that had the cartoons of the prophet and militant Muslims had a cow over it, went nuts. It's exactly what's happening here. What do we have, a president of the United States who is above all this? We have a president who's above criticism, above being mocked, above being laughed at? We have not just a president, we have an entire Democrat political party and the American left which thinks that they are so damn special that they cannot be mocked, they cannot be made fun of.
There's a great quote by C. S. Lewis. You know who C. S. Lewis was. See, if I even quote C. S. Lewis I'll get myself in a little bit of trouble here. I'd have to paraphrase. I don't have it right in front of me. C. S. Lewis said the devil can't stand being made fun of. The devil can't stand being mocked. He actually used the word "mocked." You people on the left, I know you don't have the capacity for shame, but this is just absolutely -- a clown now fearing for his life? Everybody involved in the fair quitting. The state of Missouri acting like it's profoundly embarrassed to be alive. A bunch of people with nothing better on their hands to do, running around trying to make a federal, big, gigantic issue out of this.
The video of the rodeo clown's schtick shows absolutely nothing that can remotely be conceived as "racist." As I've mentioned previously, it may be in bad taste to ask if the crowd wants to see Obama run down by a bull, but everyone knew the guy in the mask was a clown, and everyone knew that it wasn't really President Obama. Where's the racism?
I've said this previously on these pages; the massive and relentless use of the race card has resulted in the unintended consequence that nobody believes the accusers anymore. Shouting "racist" at the drop of a hat has diluted the word's power to the point that only liberals believe it matters to anyone.
Limbaugh nails it; the over the top reaction by liberals - and the cowering of Republicans in the face of criticism - is exactly what happened with Muslim hysteria about a bunch of cartoons and the reaction by much of the western press who refused to show their readers what the fuss was about.
Stockman probably won't get his wish. And the rodeo clowns will go through their re-education er..., I mean their "sensitivity training" so they won't make fun of Obama again.
But might I suggest a "Parody Obama Day" where anyone and everyone lets loose with the broadest, most satirical, most pointed mirth-making at the president's expense? The only way to fight attempts to limit speech is to shout what is being attacked from the rooftops - and often.